SAN DIEGO (CNS) - The retired president of the National Border Patrol Union was indicted by a federal grand jury Thursday on charges he used his position he held for more than two decades to divert hundreds of thousands of dollars in union funds for personal use.
Terence J. Bonner, 59, faces charges of conspiracy to commit wire fraud, wire fraud and forfeiture of ill-gotten gains in connection with a scheme to defraud some 14,000 dues-paying union members.
According to the indictment, Bonner sought and obtained payment for supposedly union-related work and travel that was, in fact, personal in nature.
"These false claims included periods of time when Bonner was actually visiting his mistress in Chicago or family members, as well as trips to attend non-union activities, such as hockey games and other sporting events," the indictment states.
The indictment alleges that Bonner, a Campo resident, submitted expense vouchers seeking reimbursement for union-related travel expenses such as meals, car rentals, tips, luggage, books and magazines when he was actually traveling for personal reasons, including vacations and other non-union activity.
"Siphoning hundreds of thousands of dollars from hard-working fellow Border Patrol agents, many of whom put their lives on the line every day to protect this country, is a particularly troubling form of corruption that must be addressed," U.S. Attorney Laura Duffy said.
Bonner and an alleged co-conspirator, identified in the indictment as a union officer, concealed from the union's membership "the manner in which Bonner was being personally enriched at Union expense."
Bonner is scheduled to make his first court appearance Monday in U.S. District Court.